fry up table
 Sunday mornings in Ireland

*In Ireland, you can buy a meat pie…in a can.

*That even though I’ve never been a nationalist, I can get defensive when the Irish slag off America/Americans. It’s the same thing with your bratty little brother; you’re allowed to say whatever you want about the little sh*tbird but when someone else does, it’s on.

*You know you’re turning Irish when you start dropping the “t” off words like what (“wha?”) and not (“noh!?”).

*Really depressing novels, especially ones that center on a former abuse victim who rises above adversity and creates a fulfilling life for him/herself, are very popular here. People go mad for titles like “Ma, He Sold Me for a Few Cigarettes” and “Don’t Tell Mummy.”

*Nudity on network television is no big deal in Ireland. That said, most of the naked people on TV are none you’d ever want to see sans clothing (see popular television show Embarrassing Bodies for many prime examples).

leinster2 leinster

Heartbreak at the Leinster Final last Sunday.

*The Northern Irish accent is about as easy to understand as Swahili (assuming you do not speak Swahili).

*The GAA – the governing body of Gaelic football – really needs to embrace the technology of instant replay (see Leinster Final controversy here).

*That no matter how much I insist I will not end the night at a cheesy dance club, I will find myself dancing away with the rest of ‘em at 3 a.m. the odd Saturday at said cheesy dance club…and loving it.

*It takes four-and-a-half years of separation to be granted a divorce in Ireland. I now understand why so many couples I know prefer to stay “life partners” rather than officially tie the knot.

apple tart  nancy

                                   Nancy and her fabulous pastry

*That on any given Sunday morning, I can drive over to my friend’s house and there will be a fry-up breakfast waiting for me and whoever else happens to show up. This brings me great comfort.

*The pronunciation of traditional Irish names is as comprehensible as a diagram of the space-time continuum. Examples: Niamh = neeve. Aoife = ee-fah. Ailbhe = al-vah. Wha???

*If I keep converting Euros into dollars in my head everytime I buy something, no good can come of it. I do not want to know that I just paid $12 for a tiny bottle of nail polish.

*The Irish are fantastic at pastry. Give any of my friends’ mothers some flour, margarine, water and a wine bottle (for rolling) and she’ll make the best damn pastry crust you’ve ever eaten. Guaranteed.


Friends, of the Irish variety

*At least twice a week, around four in the morning, I’ll hear the drunk parade (singing, crying, fighting, laughing or all of the above) coming out of the nearby bars. Cheers.

*Pouring, lashing rain is normal around here, even in June. And July. And August.

*No matter how hard you try, the mullet is not nor will ever be fashionable. That whole “business in the front, party in the back” look should have died along with leg warmers and the Cold War. Yes, teen Irish girls, I’m talking to you.

DSC_0069 dinner peeps

girls aoife clare photoshop

Funnycrazynuts: My Irish friends

*That my Irish friends are completely crazy, fully frustrating and entirely endearing at once. I  know I can count on them for anything, anytime.

*The clouds in Ireland are the most beautiful I’ve ever seen anywhere. There’s just something magical about the way they glide across the sky in fantastically fluffy formations.

*And finally: That Ireland is a pretty good place to hang my hat, at least for now.